The royal origins and traditions of cocoa for sustainability
This year’s Cocoa Festival at Eti-Oni in Atakumosa East Local Government Atrea of Osun State started on Sunday with the traditional cocoa pod breaking. The festival yearly attracts visitors from all over the world. Visitors from five countries across four continents were the early callers for the festival at Eti-Oni. The organisers said the number will increase in the course of the week.
The theme of the festival is: The royal origins and traditions of cocoa for sustainability.
The organisers said: “The festival is geared to be even bigger and better than the previous years’. We have judiciously structured this edition to reflect the potential and proud heritage of one of Nigeria’s most culturally aware townships with the festival.”
The programme is endorsed by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) for International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, 2017. The organisers said there would be the Cocoa and Produce Fair, complemented by a wide range of taste of African spices and traditional dishes, the Nigerian Cocoa Awards and The Cocoa Conference by key stakeholders as well as a field trip into the rain forest to have a direct feel of the cocoa plantation.
Farmers from all over the world who have interest in cocoa are also expected to participate in the farmers’ training sessions being handled by the state government’s team.
The co-founder and CEO of Zarahemla Limited, a cocoa trading and cocoa products manufacturing company in Colombia, Mr Waldo Enrique Murcia, performed the traditional cocoa pod breaking ceremony.